How do inoculations work?

The term inoculation and vaccination are used interchangeably. They involve introducing a foreign substance (antigens) into the body, causing antibody production. These can either be dead, made less harmful, or just contain certain bits that cause disease. White blood cells called B lymphocytes recognise these antigens, and produce antibodies to neutralise them. After the initial encounter, a group of B lymphocytes are made, called ‘memory cells’, which produce antibodies faster if exposed to the same antigen again.


Find out more amazing science in issue 70 of How It Works magazine, on sale now! Pick up a copy from all good retailers, or order it online from the ImagineShop. If you have a tablet or smartphone, you can also download the digital version onto your iOS or Android device. To make sure you never miss an issue of How It Works magazine, make sure you subscribe today!

How It Works, issue 070 Fusion Power